Late Lunchtime Links: Never trust your boss when he says you're paid well compared to your peers

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Red tie

If you wear this outfit to an interview you are unlikely to be hired, due to the tie (Photo credit: Kirk Siang)

It's the big question if you work in banking (or anywhere for that matter): how much is person X sitting alongside you earning? More specifically, where are you located in the distribution of compensation for people working at a similar level? And can you trust your boss when he promises you that you are well paid and you will be promoted - soon?

If you believe what Greg Smith is saying - which you may or may not depending upon your sympathy for someone who allegedly demanded a doubling of his pay before resigning, Greg was fed a line by his managers at Goldman Sachs. Worse: he believed it. In various interviews, Smith has reiterated his claim that he was told by his managers that his bonus had exceeded his peers' bonuses by 10%, implying that he'd outperformed by a similar amount. He also says that multiple partners told him he'd be promoted to MD in two years' time.

Needless to say, this is deeply at odds with Goldman's account of Smith's performance. Goldman says Smith regularly ranked in the bottom half of the firm during assessments, that he was the lowest earning VP among all those who joined at the same time as him, and that it had discussed the possibility of getting rid of him.

Smith still doesn't seem to accept this: "I was actually doing well in my career at Goldman," he told the Globe and Mail.  Actually, no. If anything can be drawn from this it's that managers aren't always candid with the employees who report to them.


For his future career, Greg Smith says he’d like to take an inside role on reshaping Wall Street. (YouTube)

After his resignation, Greg Smith says he started getting emails from Goldman clients who agreed with his op-ed. (GlobeandMail) 

Goldman never seriously looked at selling its commodities unit. (Bloomberg)

There is a tomb, and sewage issues, at Goldman’s Indian site. (Reuters)

Credit Suisse’s investment banking unit has a leverage ratio (debt vs. total assets) of 41x, according to a research note from Societe Generale. This is compared to a 27x leverage ratio at Deutsche Bank and 23x at UBS. (Financial News)

Otkritie has appointed the former head of the Moscow stock exchange as its CEO. (Finalternatives)

Dutch pension manager APG is cutting 800 jobs, or 20% of its workforce. (WSJ)

Howard Spooner, head of European equity trading at Barclays, joined event-driven hedge fund Omni Partners last week. (Financial News)

Erik Anderson, head of broking at Canaccord Genuity, has left to pursue other interests. (CityAm) 

Baird still seems to be hiring investment bankers in Europe. (CityAm)

Cesar Gueikian, global head of UBS’s special-situations group, has left Switzerland’s biggest bank to start a hedge fund with former colleague Andres Scaminaci. (Bloomberg)

The Bank of England is hiring a chief operating officer. (FT)

Trader leaves Wall Street, writes thriller set in bank. (Bloomberg)

If you want to be self-employed, you’ll need to be tenacious and to re-frame negative obstacles to see them as still achievable. (Occupational Digest)

Don’t wear red, including a red tie, to a job interview. (Peerreviewedbymyneurons)

Is psychological well-being linked to the consumption of fruit and vegetables? (NBER)